Honors Council Lecture Explores How the World Views Americans

How does the rest of the world perceive the United States? Dr. Rucha Ambikar, assistant professor of sociology at Bemidji State University, will explore the various lenses through which the world views the United States to open the university’s spring Honors Council Lecture Series on Jan. 19.

Ambikar’s lecture, “The American Abroad: How the Rest of the World Sees Us,” will begin at 7 p.m. in Hagg-Sauer Hall 107 on the BSU campus. Honors Council Lectures are open to all and are free of charge.

Ambikar’s lecture stems from a 65-nation global survey, conducted by the Worldwide Independent Network and Gallup in 2013, that placed the United States at the top of the list of countries that are the most-significant threats to world peace. The U.S. overwhelmingly topped that list, with 24 percent of survey respondents listing it as the largest threat to world peace, followed by Pakistan (8 percent of respondents) and China (6 percent). The same survey, however, showed that amongst respondents who wished they could move from their current country, the U.S. was the most-common choice for a new home.

Ambikar said she wishes to examine the stereotypes through which the rest of the world understands the United States with a particular focus on issues of human rights, trade relations and the country’s role in the Middle East. She also will explore American viewpoints on these issues.

“There is a significant amount of naiveté connected to how Americans view their own contribution to world instability,” she said. “This lecture will address the discrepancy of views through an interactive discussion.“

About Dr. Rucha Ambikar

Dr. Rucha Ambikar is an anthropologist who specializes in global issues on nation and identity. A native of India, she has been living in the United States for the past 16 years. This is her second year teaching in Bemidji State’s Department of Sociology.

BSU Honors Council

The Honors Council Lecture Series is hosted by the Bemidji State University Honors Council, the advisory group to BSU’s honors program composed of 12 faculty members representing each of the university’s colleges. Student representatives are also elected to the council by their cohorts for one-year terms.


Jan. 19 – 7 p.m. – Hagg-Sauer Hall 107 – Bemidji State University
Honors Council Lecture Series – Dr. Rucha Ambikar, assistant professor of sociology – “The American Abroad: How the Rest of the World Sees Us.” Free admission.


Bemidji State University, located in northern Minnesota’s lake district, occupies a wooded campus along the shore of Lake Bemidji. A member of the colleges and universities of Minnesota State, Bemidji State offers more than 80 undergraduate majors and 11 graduate degrees encompassing arts, sciences and select professional programs. Bemidji State has an enrollment of approximately 5,000 students and a faculty and staff of more than 550. University signature themes include environmental stewardship, civic engagement and global and multi-cultural understanding.